College of Fine Arts News Archive

January 2015

  • Tickets still available for Turtle Island-McKay performance

    Tickets still available for Turtle Island-McKay performance

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    January 29, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Tickets are still available for Thursday night’s performance of the two-time Grammy award-winning Turtle Island Quartet with Nellie McKay at Stephen F. Austin State University.

    The concert, which features the program “A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing,” is part of the SFA College of Fine Arts’ 2014-2015 University Series and is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas.

    The performance is at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 29 in W.M. Turner Auditorium, which is located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building. Prior to the concert, Jennifer Dalmas, associate professor of violin and viola at SFA, will present a 7 p.m. informative talk in Griffith Gallery about the artists and their music. The gallery is located across the hall from Turner Auditorium.

    Tickets range from $20 to $40, with discounts available for seniors, SFA faculty/staff, students and youth. For tickets or more information, visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call (936) 468-6407 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • Madera Wind Quintet to perform at SFA

    Madera Wind Quintet to perform at SFA

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    January 29, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present the Madera Wind Quintet, one of the state’s premier woodwind ensembles, in concert at 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 8, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    The performance is part of the quintet’s 2015 Southwest Tour and will feature the music of Texas composer Don Gillis from the ensemble’s upcoming CD release “Five Piece Combo,” along with new works for wind quintet from the group’s earlier album, “Five at Play.”

    Throughout February, the quintet, which includes SFA School of Music alumnus Jason Paschall, will give concerts and master classes in Tyler, Denton, Nacogdoches, Kingsville and Corpus Christi before heading to San Antonio to perform at the Texas Music Educators Association Convention.

    “I am thrilled at the thought of our upcoming tour,” Paschall said. “Our love for outreach, for each other and for the music itself will make every performance engaging and inspiring.

    “My journey of self discovery began at SFA, and it is with a lot of excitement that I’m visiting again,” he said. “The artistry and musicianship possessed and shared by the faculty at SFA is a large part of what has fueled my passion for a career in performance. I think what I’m most excited about is meeting and sharing with the next generation of young music majors. It will also be a thrill to be back on stage in Cole Concert Hall to share a really fun program that features works from our upcoming album ‘Five Piece Combo!’”

    In 2008, five musicians with a shared love for chamber music came together in Denton to form the Madera Wind Quintet. Performing for diverse audiences across the United States, the group has quickly become known as one of today’s most exciting wind quintets, according to Fred J. Allen, director of bands at SFA.

    Exploring the fringes of the quintet repertoire – new music, forgotten gems, original arrangements and music for children – Madera also engages audiences with the classic repertoire and beauty of the wind quintet sonority.

    The musicians of the Madera Wind Quintet are Paschall, oboe; Amy Thiemann, flute; Rachel Yoder, clarinet; Jorge Cruz Jr., bassoon; and Angela Winter, horn.

    Madera premiered the International Joint Wind Quintet Commissioning Project’s winning composition at the 2012 International Double Reed Society and International Horn Society conferences. Educational outreach is also important to Madera, whose work includes workshops and clinics for students of all ages.

    The concert, which is sponsored by the SFA band program, will also include classics from the wind quintet repertoire, as well as some original arrangements.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Cole Series to feature violin, piano recital

    Cole Series to feature violin, piano recital

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    Kae Hosoda-Ayer
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    Jennifer Dalmas
    January 29, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present Jennifer Dalmas and Kae Hosoda-Ayer performing a violin and piano recital at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 8, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Dalmas, associate professor of violin and viola at SFA, and Hosoda-Ayer, assistant professor at Baylor University where she teaches collaborative piano, will perform sonatas for violin and piano by three distinctive composers, including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johannes Brahms and Maurice Ravel.

    The first piece on the program will be Mozart’s Sonata for piano and violin in E minor, K. 304.

    “It was written when Mozart was in Paris and around the time of his mother’s death, which probably accounts for its melancholy and expressive character,” Dalmas said. “Although an early work, it is regarded as one of Mozart’s finest chamber compositions.”

    The Violin Sonata in G major by Ravel emphasizes the difference in tone colors between the two instruments, Dalmas explained, describing the piece as “elegant and sometimes quirky.”

    “The second movement, ‘Blues,’ contains many jazz and blues elements,” she said, “and the last movement is quite exciting, featuring perpetual motion throughout.”

    The final piece on the program is the Sonata No. 3 in D minor, Op. 108, which is the last sonata Brahms composed for the violin and the “most dramatic and stormy in character,” Dalmas said.

    “It is almost symphonic in scope, as well, and is his only violin sonata containing four movements,” she said.

    Dalmas and Hosoda-Ayer will perform this same program in Waco on Feb. 6 before performing it at SFA. Dalmas will also teach a master class at Baylor University that day.

    Tickets for this Cole Performing Arts Series performance are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Seating available for popular ‘Junie B. Jones’ show on Friday

    Seating available for popular ‘Junie B. Jones’ show on Friday

    January 28, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Due to a last-minute group cancellation, seats have opened up for the 12:30 p.m. Jan. 30 performance of “Junie B. Jones,” a previously sold-out show in this year’s Children’s Performing Arts Series at Stephen F. Austin State University.

    Back by popular demand is the fast-paced musical starring Junie B. Jones, the outspoken, precocious first grader from Barbara Park’s series of books. Learn about new friends, new glasses, the annual kickball tournament and other angst-ridden situations as Junie writes down the story of her life in her ‘Top-Secret Personal Beeswax Journal.’

    Theatreworks USA presents this touring production, which targets children in kindergarten through fifth grade. The Children’s Performing Arts Series is presented by the SFA College of Fine Arts.

    Tickets are $6 for individuals and $5 per person for groups of 20 or more. For tickets or more information, call the Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.cpas.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA Wind Ensemble to present ‘Winter Tour Concert’

    SFA Wind Ensemble to present ‘Winter Tour Concert’

    January 26, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Wind Ensemble at Stephen F. Austin State University will present its annual “Winter Tour Concert” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 3, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    Returning from a performance tour that included visits to North Shore High School, Cleveland High School and Crosby High School, among other schools, the Wind Ensemble will present works by well-known composers.

    “We go on tour each winter to show bands around the state what SFA has to offer,” said Fred J. Allen, director of bands at SFA. “This concert will give our local audience a chance to hear what the band performed for students in the schools we visited.”

    The program opens with “March from the Symphonic Metamorphosis” by Paul Hindemith. A highlight of the concert will be a performance of “Passacaglia” by American composer Ron Nelson.

    David W. Campo, associate director of bands, will conduct Nancy Galbriath’s “Danza de los Duendes.” “O Magnum Mysterium” by Morten Lauridsen will be conducted by Tamey Anglley, assistant director of bands.

    This concert is a joint presentation of the College of Fine Arts and School of Music. Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • SFA to screen ‘Tim’s Vermeer’

    SFA to screen ‘Tim’s Vermeer’

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    The 2013 Penn & Teller film “Tim’s Vermeer” chronicles Tim Jenison’s quest to determine how Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer painted so photo-realistically.

    January 26, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University School of Art and the Friends of the Visual Arts will present a free, one-night screening of “Tim’s Vermeer” at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 6, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    A Sony Pictures Classic release, this 2013 Penn & Teller film is the story of Tim Jenison, a Texas-based inventor, who attempts to solve one of the greatest mysteries in all art: How did 17th century Dutch master Johannes Vermeer (“Girl with a Pearl Earring") manage to paint so photo-realistically – 150 years before the invention of photography?

    According to information at sonyclassics.com, “The epic research project Jenison embarks on to test his theory is as extraordinary as what he discovers.”

    Spanning eight years, Jenison’s adventure takes him to Delft, Holland, where Vermeer painted his masterpieces, on a pilgrimage to the north coast of Yorkshire to meet artist David Hockney, and even to Buckingham Palace to see a Vermeer masterpiece in the collection of Queen Elizabeth II.

    Betsy Sharkey of The Los Angeles Times describes the 80-minute film as, “A fascinating new documentary about art, obsessions, ideas and answers.”

    The film is rated PG-13 for some strong language.

    This screening is part of the School of Art’s monthly Friday Night Film Series and is sponsored in part by the Nacogdoches Junior Forum, The Liberty Bell, Main Street Nacogdoches, Bill Arscott, Jill Carrington, Karon Gillespie, John Heath, David Kulhavy and Brad Maule.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • Ajero piano recital features father-son performance

    Ajero piano recital features father-son performance

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    Mario Ajero
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    Nio Ajero
    January 26, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    “Piano Reflections,” a faculty recital with Mario Ajero, associate professor of piano and piano pedagogy in Stephen F. Austin State University’s School of Music, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 5, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Ajero selected the theme “Piano Reflections” because “the majority of the works on the program are pieces that I had learned when I was younger. I discovered that the process of re-visiting them when I’m older gave me a different perspective on these piano compositions.”

    The recital in a joint presentation of the College of Fine Arts and School of Music and is included in this year’s Cole Performing Arts Series.

    As a highlight, the concert will feature Ajero’s 10-year-old son and piano student, Antonio “Nio” Ajero, as guest solo artist performing the Piano Concerto in A Major, K. 414 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Ajero will play the orchestra portion on a second piano.

    “This is the first full three-movement piano concerto that Nio has learned,” Ajero said, “and in a program entitled ‘Piano Reflections,’ I felt it fitting to include my son as a reflection of my teaching. I consider it one of the most satisfying experiences to share the stage with him and be able to perform the orchestra reduction part for his piano solo at this age.”

    Among the other pieces to be performed are Piano Variations by Aaron Copland.

    “This is one of my favorite piano works of the 20th century and is much more striking than his more popular compositions and works influenced by jazz,” Ajero said. “It focuses on a short main theme from which Copland weaves imaginative musical ideas. The shocking dissonances are contrasted by moments of tenderness as well as variations with changing meter and driving rhythms.”

    Ajero will also perform Ballade No. 4 in F Minor by Frédéric Chopin, which Ajero describes as “one of my favorite works from the Romantic era. It exhibits beauty in a more traditional sense compared to the Copland Piano Variations.”

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Exhibition features photography of poet Dickinson’s bedroom

    Exhibition features photography of poet Dickinson’s bedroom

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    “Window-pane, Second West Window” is among the photographs featured in the exhibition “Billie Mandle: Circumference” showing through March 13 in Griffith Gallery on the SFA campus.

    January 21, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    “Billie Mandle: Circumference,” showing Jan. 27 through March 13 in Griffith Gallery on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus, is an exhibition featuring the artist’s most recent project – photographs of American poet Emily Dickinson’s bedroom.

    For the past year, photographer Mandle, using a large format camera and available light, has photographed Dickinson’s bedroom, focusing primarily on the southwest corner into which her desk faced. The photographic project, which Mandle calls “Circumference,” explores the light as it changes throughout the day and across the seasons.

    “The surface of the walls have changed since Dickinson lived there, but the quality of light is the same that infused her poetry,” Mandle writes of her project. “As I photograph this potent corner, focusing on both the physical structure of the walls and the ephemeral space in between, I search for what might be learned about imagination, attention and observation.”

    Mandle explains that the word “circumference” is often used by Dickinson to “suggest the tangible world that poetry could describe but not penetrate.”

    “My work explores surfaces – questioning the ways that they embed meaning, conceal histories and reflect the limitations of knowing,” she said. “Beginning with the premise that the world withholds as much as it reveals, I look at the intersection of people, their environments and their beliefs, focusing on the convergence of place and self. I read the objects we touch and the materials that surround us as a map to an interior landscape. Photographs are all surface; for me, one of the challenges of photography is in trying to find a way to convey the depth of reality through a medium that only describes the surface of the world. ”

    Mandle received a Bachelor of Art in English and biology from Williams College and an Master of Fine Art in photography from Massachusetts College of Art and Design. She is the recipient of a Whiting Fellowship, a Kahn Institute Fellowship, an Artist Fellowship in Photography from the New York Foundation for the Arts, and an Individual Artist Grant from the Brooklyn Arts Council. Photographs from her series “Reconciliation” were selected for the 25th Hyères Photography Festival in France. Her work has also been nominated for the Prix Pictet and the Paul Huf award. She is an assistant professor of photography at Hampshire College and lives in Massachusetts.

    Mandle will give an artist talk at 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 3, in the Art Building on the SFA campus. An exhibition/artist reception will immediately follow in Griffith Gallery in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

    All SFA School of Art exhibitions, gallery talks and receptions are free. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • Guest trombonist to perform music of Rousseau, Clarke, Von Weber

    Guest trombonist to perform music of Rousseau, Clarke, Von Weber

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    Charles Hurt

    January 19, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present Charles Hurt in a guest trombone recital at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Hurt, who is professor of trombone at Texas State University and principal trombonist of the Austin Symphony for 30 years, will be the guest artist of the SFA Trombone Studio and will teach and perform on campus for three days.

    Hurt will work with the SFA Trombone Choir on Monday and perform a solo trombone recital, accompanied by pianist Ron Petti, SFA director of accompanying, on Tuesday. Hurt will teach students in private lessons throughout the three days and will also teach a master class for all trombone students at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 28, in Cole Concert Hall.

    His recital will consist of a variety of pieces that are standard to the trombone’s solo repertoire. Among the pieces to be performed are “Romanza Appassionata” by C.M. Von Weber, “Piece Concertante” by Samuel Rousseau and “Maid of the Mist” by Herbert L. Clarke.

    Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, located at 2210 Alumni Drive.

    Tickets for this Cole Performing Arts Series event are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Turtle Island Quartet to perform at SFA with singer, songwriter McKay

    Turtle Island Quartet to perform at SFA with singer, songwriter McKay

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    The SFA College of Fine Arts will present the Grammy award-winning Turtle Island Quartet performing with Nellie McKay at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 29, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the SFA campus.

    January 19, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Nellie McKay joins forces with the two-time Grammy award-winning Turtle Island Quartet to present a bold performance of chamber music at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 29, in W.M. Turner Auditorium on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.

    The concert, which features the program “A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing,” is part of the SFA College of Fine Arts’ 2014-2015 University Series, “Connect,” and is sponsored in part by Commercial Bank of Texas.

    The night’s performance will feature a kaleidoscope of music, ranging from the jazz standards of Billie Holliday and Billy Strayhorn to the sounds of the Weimar cabaret era of the 1920s to the songs of Doris Day.

    “Since its beginning in 1985, the Turtle Island Quartet has been a singular force in the creation of bold, new trends in chamber music for strings,” said John W. Goodall, associate dean of the SFA College of Fine Arts. “Turtle Island has a phenomenal international following, and this collaboration with the multi-talented Nellie McKay will no doubt guarantee a great night of music.”

    Renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma has proclaimed Turtle Island Quartet to be “a unified voice that truly breaks new ground – authentic and passionate – a reflection of some of the most creative music-making today.” Winner of the 2006 and 2008 Grammy Awards for Best Classical Crossover category, the group fuses the classical quartet esthetic with contemporary American musical styles.

    Hailed by the New Yorker magazine as “funny and touching, ceaselessly clever and scarily talented,” McKay just completed an extended run in the off-Broadway hit “Old Hats.” Her music has been heard on the TV shows “Mad Men,” “Weeds,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and “NCIS,” among others. She has appeared on “Late Show with David Letterman” (with the Brooklyn Philharmonic), “The View,” “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,” “Live with Regis & Kelly” and “CBS Saturday Morning.”

    Turtle Island features Mateusz Smoczynski on violin, David Balakrishnan on violin and baritone violin, Benjamin von Gutzeit on viola and Mark Summer on cello. McKay accompanies with vocals, marimba, piano and ukulele. Turtle Island Quartet is represented by Baylin Artists Management, and McKay is represented by Monterey International.

    Prior to the concert, Jennifer Dalmas, associate professor of violin and viola at SFA, will present a 7 p.m. informative talk in Griffith Gallery about the artists and their music. The gallery is located across the hall from Turner Auditorium. The audience is invited back to the gallery for a post-performance reception to meet the performers and to honor the event’s corporate sponsor, Commercial Bank of Texas.

    Griffith Gallery and Turner Auditorium are located in the Griffith Fine Arts Building, 2222 Alumni Drive.

    Tickets range from $20 to $40, with discounts available for seniors, SFA faculty/staff, students and youth. For tickets or more information, visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu or call (936) 468-6406 or (888) 240-ARTS.

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  • Iktus Duo to perform at SFA

    Iktus Duo to perform at SFA

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    Hristina Blagoeva
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    Chris Graham
    January 19, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present the Iktus Duo in concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 24, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus. The duo will also give a masterclass that is free and open to the public at 2 p.m. that same day in Room 124 of the Wright Music Building on campus.

    The duo features Hristina Blagoeva, flute, and Chris Graham, percussion, who will perform the program “Adventurous Works for Flute and Percussion.”

    First Concerto for Flute and Percussion by Lou Harrison, “Echi Dromo,” a duet for flute and dumbek by Joseph Pereira, and Duo for Flute and Percussion by Mark Engebretson will be performed.

    With an active performance schedule, the Iktus Duo begins 2015 with performances, educational workshops and world premieres at the University of Texas-Tyler, Louisiana State University, Hardin Simmons University, Southeastern Louisiana University and SFA, and at venues throughout New York City. The ensemble also performed at the Versipel New Music Festival in New Orleans. Educational outreach and performances took place last fall at the Neighborhood Classics Series (a series dedicated to underprivileged students in New York) and Suffolk Community College in Long Island. Additionally, the ensemble was the 2014 Ackerman Chamber Music Competition winner. The Iktus Duo has performed at the Con Vivo New Music Series in New Jersey, Bulgarian Consulate in New York and Spectrum NYC.

    Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Duo Karudan to perform program of contemporary music

    Duo Karudan to perform program of contemporary music

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    The Duo Karudan will perform at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25, in Cole Concert Hall on the Stephen F. Austin State University campus.

    January 19, 2015—

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Music will present Duo Karudan performing a program of contemporary music for clarinet and piano at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25, in Cole Concert Hall on the SFA campus.

    Duo Karudan features the husband-and-wife team of SFA clarinetist Christopher Ayer and Baylor University pianist Kae Hosoda-Ayer.

    The recital will include the music of many contemporary composers, including a piece by Dr. Maria Grenfell, who is professor of composition at the Hobart Conservatorium in Tasmania. Grenfell spent a semester teaching composition and theory at SFA in the spring of 2013 as part of the SFA School of Music-Hobart Conservatorium musical exchange. One of Ayer’s clarinet students, Garrett Nichols, just returned from Tasmania after studying a semester there.

    The program will also include the music of Jeff Scott, hornist with the Imani Wind Quintet, the Grammy-nominated ensemble based in New York City. The recital will end with the music of Paquito D’Rivera, the multiple Grammy-winning jazz clarinetist and composer.

    “Even though only one or two of the pieces are explicitly inspired by urban themes, I feel that all of the works on the program reflect an urban or technological environment in one way or another,” Ayer said. “Two of the pieces are older than 20 years, but the rest have all been written in this century. It is a very diverse collection of music, but for me it has this urban/technology thread that connects all of the music.”

    Cole Concert Hall is located in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building, located at 2210 Alumni Drive.

    Tickets for this Cole Performing Arts Series event are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students and youth. For tickets or more information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407 or visit http://www.finearts.sfasu.edu.

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  • Cole Art Center exhibition to feature work of Florida artist Riordan

    Cole Art Center exhibition to feature work of Florida artist Riordan

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    “When the Woods Got Heavy” by American painter and designer Stuart Riordan will be among the pieces featured in the exhibition “Stuart Riordan: Sardines & Oranges,” which is showing at The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House through March 28.

    January 19, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Art will celebrate the exhibition “Stuart Riordan: Sardines & Oranges” with a reception at 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 22, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    The exhibition, which runs through March 28, features Riordan’s renowned paintings of the human form, and the artist will be in attendance at the reception, according to John Handley, director of galleries at SFA.

    “Riordan’s work has been described as political, erotic, Goya-esque, mysterious and darkly funny,” Handley said. “Her work has touched upon themes of history, politics, science, music and the loss of innocence. She has been compared to masters such as Renoir and Jim Dine, maintaining a modern taste with classical foundations.”

    Riordan has said of her work, “The human body has more gestures, mystery and intrigue, and everybody can relate to it. I think Socrates said an artist does his stuff but is not ‘there’ when doing it, and only after it is done can the artist formulate ideas of the work and viewers formulate their ideas.” Quoting abstract expressionist artist Willem de Kooning, she said, “‘It’s all in the flesh’ is what de Kooning said, and he was right.”

    Tallahassee Democrat writer and columnist Mark Hinson wrote: “At first glance, Riordan’s accomplished human figure paintings seem formal and even neo-traditional – far away from, for example, de Kooning’s ‘Women’ series. But on closer inspection the viewer notices her attention to the gestural aspects of the painting – the swirls of color, the layering of paint, the strokes that have been created by using the other end of the brush, of the fractured sentences and phrases that run across the work as if yanked out of some larger sequence.”

    Riordan mixes her own paints, which are made from dirt, clay, pumice and dry pigments imported from distant locations such as Tasmania and Australia.

    The exhibition, sponsored in part by the SFA Friends of the Visual Arts and Nacogdoches Junior Forum, is a feature of the SFA College of Fine Arts’ University Series. Admission is free.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • ‘Outsider art’ subject of upcoming exhibition in Cole Art Center

    ‘Outsider art’ subject of upcoming exhibition in Cole Art Center

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    “Cat” by Moses Foster is among the artwork to be featured in the exhibition “Beyond the Academy: Contemporary Outsider and Expressionist Art” showing Jan. 22 through March 28 at The Cole Art Center.

    January 19, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts and School of Art will present the exhibition “Beyond the Academy: Contemporary Outsider and Expressionist Art” showing Jan. 22 through March 28 in Ledbetter Gallery in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    “Beyond the Academy: Contemporary Outsider and Expressionist Art” presents the works of several contemporary Texan artists whose art can be loosely defined as outsider or naïve in style, according to John Handley, director of galleries at SFA.

    “Artwork of this genre is not new, having roots in late 19th and 20th century European and American art,” he said.

    The exhibition will open with a reception with the artists at 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 22, in Cole Art Center. Local artist Wally Knight, who is co-curating the exhibition with Handley, will also have pieces in the exhibition.

    According to Handley, the art critic Roger Cardinal first used the label outsider art in 1972, picking up on the term by the French artist Jean Dubuffet (1901 – 1985), who described artwork outside the establishment, including that of psychiatric patients, as art brut, or literally, raw art. This work greatly influenced Dubuffet’s later work.

    “Dubuffet's term art brut was rather specific,” Handley said. “But today, the term outsider art is used in a variety of ways – to describe self-taught artists, as well as those working outside the accepted norms of realism, whether trained or not. In this way, outsider art’s close relative is folk art – an equally difficult term to clearly define.”

    Among the artists represented in the exhibition are Haydée Victoria Suescum, whose style of painting is “characterized by anti-classical themes, intentionally discordant colors, impossible scales, rough brushstrokes, and a consistent sense of humor,” said Mónica E. Kupfer, director of Fundacion Arte y Cultura and contributing writer to Art Nexus Magazine.

    Outsider artist Lee Michael Peterson said of his work, “I want purpose. I, above all else, want to matter. My work is concerned with the pathetic state, but simultaneously a humorous one – completely hopeless, yet still hanging for dear life onto a sliver of fantasy.”

    “Outsider art continues to draw attention through scholarly articles and exhibitions,” Handley said.

    The American Folk Art Museum in New York is currently traveling a large exhibition of outsider art, which will come to the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth Oct. 10.

    “Beyond the Academy: Contemporary Outsider and Expressionist Art” is sponsored in part by the Nacogdoches Junior Forum and the Friends of the Visual Arts. The exhibition is a feature of the SFA College of Fine Arts’ University Series. Admission is free.

    The Cole Art Center is located at 329 E. Main St. For more information, call (936) 468-1131.

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  • SFA announces contestants in prestigious Schmidbauer competition

    SFA announces contestants in prestigious Schmidbauer competition

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    Brent He
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    Derek Louie
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    Faith Song
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    Fiona Shea
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    Grace Song
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    Jason Zang
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    Marcela Reina
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    Samantha Choo
    January 13, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    Ten outstanding young musicians have been accepted as participants in the distinguished 2015 Schmidbauer Young Artist Competition at Stephen F. Austin State University.

    Celebrating its eighth year, the Schmidbauer Competition holds the highest standards in artistry and performance. It is designed to attract young high school musicians ages 15 to 18 who seek to continue future careers involving music and are looking at schools that may be best suited toward helping them reach their goals. It is SFA’s goal to be that institution, according to Dr. Gene Moon, director of orchestral studies at SFA and of the competition.

    A valuable recruiting tool for SFA, the Schmidbauer Competition offers a unique performance opportunity for young musicians, offering prizes that include cash awards, scholarship incentives from the SFA School of Music and performance opportunities with orchestras.

    “Concerto performances with orchestras are very rare for a musician at any stage of their professional career, and very much for a budding high school student,” Moon said. “Our hope is that eager young students will be attracted to such lucrative opportunities. I am always excited to work with young musicians. They bring such a naïve, young energy to the stage that affects greatness in everyone around them.”

    Slated for Saturday, Jan. 31, the competition takes place in Cole Concert Hall in the Tom and Peggy Wright Music Building on the SFA campus. The semi-final round of the competition begins at 3 p.m. Finalists will be announced at approximately 5 p.m. Those who move onto the final round will perform in a live concert starting at 7:30 p.m.

    Among the competitors are:

    Brent He, a 16-year-old pianist from Plano, began his piano studies at the age of 6 with Yi-Fan Liu. Under Liu’s tuition, Brent received numerous awards in various piano competitions held by the Dallas Music Teachers Association, Texas Music Teachers Association Collin County Young Artist Competition and Baylor University School of Music. At the Dallas Symphonic Festivals, Brent was awarded first place in the Concerto Competition in 2009 and first place in the Solo Competitions in 2007, 2008 and 2013. Brent received first place at the Dallas Piano Solo Competition in 2010, first place in the 2012 Baylor/Waco Piano Concerto Competition held by the Baylor University School of Music, and second place at the TMTA State Solo Performance Piano Competition in 2013.

    Brent is an 11th grade student at Plano East Senior High School and plays the double bass in the school’s chamber orchestra. He has also participated as a double bassist in the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra since 9th grade and is a co-principle this year. In addition, Brent was the first chair double bassist in the Texas Region XXV All-Region Orchestra in 2011 and 2013 and is one of very few high school students in Texas who has made it to the Texas All-State Orchestra for three consecutive years. However, despite these other musical accomplishments, piano continues to be his true passion and the one that he hopes to further develop into the future.

    Derek Louie, 16, is in his sixth year at the Juilliard School pre-college in New York, N.Y., where he studies with Minhye Clara Kim. Derek has given numerous performances including appearances on National Public Radion’s “From The Top” and “The Rising Stars Concert Series” at the Great Mountains Music Festival. Derek has won many awards including the Ensemble 212 Young Artist Competition and soloed with the Ensemble 212 Orchestra at Merkin Hall in May of 2014. He was a semi-finalist in the 8th International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Moscow. He won first prize in the Ensemble Du Monde Concerto competition and will be soloing with their orchestra in the 2014-2015 season. He won grand prize in the 2013 International Virtuoso Competition. He also won the New York Chamber Players 3rd Music Competition and soloed with their orchestra in October of 2013. Derek was a finalist in the 2013 Mondavi Young Artist Competition and a semi-finalist in the 7th International Tchaikovsky Music Competition for Young Musicians in Montreux, Switzerland. He soloed with the American Symphonia Orchestra in 2011. He was awarded 1st prize in the 2012 and 2010 YWCA New York Music Competitions and 1st prize in the 8th Annual Long Island Conservatory International Music Competition in 2011. He won first prize in the 2010 AFAF Golden Strings of America Competition. In 2013, Derek attended the Heifetz Institute on a merit scholarship. He has studied with Myuang-Wha Chung, Frans Helmerson, Ralph Kirshbaum and Jian Wang and has performed with Joan Kwuon. He has participated in several festivals including the Great Mountains International Music Festival in South Korea and the MusicAlp festival in France. He has been a member of several chamber groups and has performed for the Dvorak American Heritage Association at the Bohemian National Hall in New York City. Derek has performed at Weill Recital Hall, Carnegie Hall, Alpensia Concert Hall in South Korea, Merkin Hall and several times at Paul Hall, Lincoln Center.

    Faith Song is a 15-year-old cellist who is currently attending Westwood High School in Austin. She is studying with Professor Hai Olefsky. Last summer, Faith participated in the Texas Cello Academy at the University of Texas at Arlington and was one of the five soloists to perform during the concert. For her solo, she played the Elgar Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op. 85 Adagio Moderato. In the current school year, Faith is a member of the Westwood High School Symphony Orchestra. She placed second in the 2014-2015 All Region (Region 26) as a freshman and made Texas All State Philharmonic Orchestra, as well.

    During her middle school years, Faith was a member of the Canyon Vista Middle School Symphony Orchestra, and, in her eighth-grade year, was the principle cellist. For all three years, Faith had been a part of the All Region 26 Middle School Orchestra and had placed first chair in 2013. Additionally, she was, and still is, a member of the Chamber Music in Public Schools (CHAMPS); her piano quintet from Canyon Vista won the 2013-2014 Coltman International Competition.

    Apart from school, Faith was a member of the National Junior Honor Society in Canyon Vista Middle School and was ranked sixth in the National French Competition. Outside of school, Faith is involved in the Austin Youth Symphony Orchestra; she had auditioned during eighth grade (the youngest grade permitted) and was successfully accepted as a member.

    Fiona Shea is a 15-year-old violinist from Lubbock. She is currently the concertmaster of the Youth Orchestras of Lubbock Symphony and also a member of the YOL Chamber Music Program. At the age of 10, she was a concerto soloist with the Jacksonville (Illinois) Symphony Orchestra as the grand prize winner of the “Talent Among Us” competition. Since then, she has won competitions and been featured as concerto soloist with the Youth Orchestras of Lubbock Symphony and the Intermediate Age Division Orchestra at the Interlochen Center for the Arts 2013 Summer Program. She received honorable mentions in the 2012 Walgreen’s/Midwest Young Artists Competition and the 2014 Juanita Miller Concerto Competition in Dallas. Most recently, Fiona was selected as the 2014 Junior Division Winner of the Texas American String Teacher’s Association Solo Competition. She was a member of the 2014 Texas All-State Philharmonic Orchestra, is a member of the 2015 Texas All State Symphony Orchestra and was honored as an Outstanding Soloist in the 2014 Texas UIL State Solo Contest. She has participated in summer chamber music and orchestral programs in Minnesota, Colorado and Michigan and most recently in Charles Castleman’s Quartet Program in upstate New York. Fiona studies with Dr. John Gilbert, professor of music at Texas Tech University.

    Grace Song is a 17-year-old violinist and a senior at Westwood High School in Austin and studies with Brian Lewis, professor of violin at the University of Texas in Austin. Her current achievements include winning the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra Competition which gave her the opportunity to play with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, the Wilcox Competition along with the Sally Rudd Supplemental Award, an invitation to demonstrate at a lecture hosted by Dr. Charles Ervin at the 2014 Menuhin International Violin Competition, Austin, and the grand prize at the 5th and 7th Young Musicians’ Festival Competitions.

    Grace has been named concertmaster in the Westwood High School Symphony Orchestra, Austin Youth Symphony Orchestra and the 2013 Region 26 High School Symphony Orchestra. In December 2013, Grace performed John Williams’ scoring of Carlos Gardel’s “Por Una Cabeza” as a soloist with the Westwood High School Full Orchestra for the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago. In 2012, she won the Austin Symphony Youth Competition, which gave her the opportunity to perform with the Austin Symphony Orchestra and tour with them to several high schools in Austin.

    In the summer, Grace attends the Meadowmount School of Music in New York. Aside from violin, she is an accomplished pianist. She has won numerous piano competitions, including the ADMTA Piano Solo Competition.

    Jason Zang, a 15-year-old pianist from Dallas, is a sophomore at Newman Smith High School in Carrollton where he is an advanced student, studying college math and physics for seniors. Jason began studying classical music and piano at the age of 5 with a local private piano teacher.

    In two consecutive years in 2012 and 2013, Jason won first prize in the Texas Music Teachers Association’s 7th and 8th Grade Performance Competition for Piano Solo. He also won second place in 2012 TMTA-MTNA Performance Competition. He is now studying with the renowned professor Dr. Tamas Ungar who has elevated Jason’s understanding of the piano and knowledge of the repertoire. Ungar’s mentoring has had a profound effect on Jason’s music and personality. “I am totally dedicated to studying and performing the great masters, and I approach this with a positive attitude that will lead me to give my very best at all times,” Jason said.

    Marcela Reina is a 17-year-old cellist from Houston. She is a senior at J. Frank Dobie High School and is an active member in the varsity orchestra and also plays bass for the school’s other orchestras when needed. She began playing the cello when she was 9 and started taking private lessons two years ago. She is now studying with Mark Varian. In her spare time she participates in the Pasadena Philharmonic Orchestra and other events. After high school, Marcela is planning to double major in both cello performance and music education and will use those two degrees to perform and teach while participating in other competitions.

    Samantha Choo, 15, of Plano began studying violin at the age of 7. She is currently a student of Philip Lewis, concertmaster of the Richardson Symphony Orchestra. Choo recently had the honor of performing at the 2014 Basically Beethoven Festival’s Rising Star Recital. She also had the privilege of playing at Chamber Music International’s October pre-concert. Samantha has soloed with the Meadows Symphony Orchestra and Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra as their concerto competition winner.

    Samantha has won top prizes in the Chamber Music International, Collin County Young Artists, Vernell Gregg Young Artists and Dallas Symphonic Festival concerto competitions. Her summer activities include attending the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music’s Summer String Academy and University of Arlington’s Texas Chamber Music Institute where she received merit scholarships. She has also joined the University of North Texas’s Summer String Institute and The Institute For Strings. Samantha has performed in solo master classes for Gary Levinson and Mimi Zweig.

    Samantha is concertmaster of the Jasper Symphony Orchestra, which has been named the 2014 National Honors Full Orchestra and Texas Honor Full Orchestra. She has been in the GDYO program for seven years and performed side-by-side with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra on NPR’s “From the Top.” She is a member of the 2014-2015 Texas All-State Symphony Orchestra.

    Admission to the semi-final round of the competition is free, and tickets to the final round are $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and $3 for students/youth. For ticketing information, call the SFA Fine Arts Box Office at (936) 468-6407.

    For more information about competition, contact Moon at (936) 468-3885 or moongh@sfasu.edu or visit http://www.schmidbauercompetition.org.

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  • Cobb exhibition to close with artist’s interview

    Cobb exhibition to close with artist’s interview

    January 9, 2015—Robbie Goodrich

    The exhibition “Vision & Substance: The Art of John Cobb” will close with a reception beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 10, in The Cole Art Center @ The Old Opera House in downtown Nacogdoches.

    The exhibition, which is a feature of the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts’ 2014-2015 University Series, has been showing in Ledbetter Gallery in Cole Art Center since opening on Oct. 25.

    At the closing, Dr. John Handley, director of galleries at SFA, will conduct an interview with Cobb at 4:30 p.m. Additionally, the first catalog ever produced on this artist will be available for purchase in the new Cole Art Center bookstore. The catalog features insightful essays written by Handley and Dr. David Lewis, professor of art history in the SFA School of Art.

    For more than 30 years, Cobb has been working on a series of egg tempera and gold leaf paintings for a chapel series. At present, the majority of the paintings are displayed in a temporary free-standing chapel that viewers can enter.

    In the catalog, Handley writes that Cobb’s vision is “the creation of a chapel filled with glistening egg-tempera and gold leaf paintings, executed in the methods of the old masters, depicting his rendition of modern day saints in Biblical semblance.”

    The exhibition was supported by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts and Valley House Gallery and Sculpture Garden. It was sponsored in part by the SFA Friends of the Visual Arts and the Nacogdoches Junior Forum.

    All exhibitions and gallery lectures are free.

    For additional information about this exhibition and others presented by the SFA art galleries, visit http://www.art.sfasu.edu/ or call (936) 468-1131.

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